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UPCOMING RELEASES

Latest Additions:

Old Crow Medicine Show - Remedy (7/1)
South Rail - Stars EP (5/6)
PHOX - S/T (6/24)
Sara Lowes - The Joy of Waiting (TBA)
Johnossi - Transitions (4/29)
Emma Ruth Rundle - Some Heavy Ocean (5/20)
Birdy - Fire Within (6/3 U.S.)
The Milk Carton Kids - Live from Lincoln Theatre DVD (4/29)
Bebel Gilberto - Tudo! (7/29)
Sara Swenson - Runway Lights (Summer TBA)
Challenger - Back to Bellevue (5/27)
Jay Brannan - Always, Then, and Now (7/15)
The Shilohs - S/T (5/13)
Wilsen - Magnolia EP (5/19)
Amber States - Saratoga EP (4/28)
Mimicking Birds - Eons (5/13)
Mark Chadwick (Levellers) - Moment (6/16)
Mary Gauthier - Trouble & Love (6/10)
You Are Wolf - Hawk to the Hunting Gone (5/6 UK)
Blair Dunlop - House of Jacks (5/26)
Beverly Craven - Change of Heart (6/17 UK)
Lonely the Brave - The Day's War (6/3)
Eleanor McEvoy - Stuff (5/12)
Heather Peace - The Thin Line (6/9 UK)
George Ezra - TBA (6/23 UK)
James Taylor - TBA (8/19)
Rival Sons - Great Western Valkyrie (6/10)
Meshell Ndegeocello - Comet, Come to Me (6/3)
Paul Weller - More Modern Classics (6/3)
Daughter - Live @ Air (4/15)
Imelda May - Tribal (7/29)
The Roots - And Then You Shoot Your Cousin (5/19)
Phillip Phillips - Behind the Light (5/19)
Nick Mulvey - First Mind (9/16 U.S.)
The Peach Kings - Mojo Thunder EP (6/3)
Ed Sheeran - x (multiply) (6/23)
Puss N Boots (Norah Jones) - No Fools, No Fun (7/15)

April 15

Afghan Whigs - Do To the Beast
Amatorski - From Clay Figures
Amaya Laucirica - Sway (4/18 AUS)
Bobby Bare Jr. - Undefeated
Bruce Springsteen - American Beauty EP (4/19)
Dan Wilson - Love Without Fear
 Daughter - Live @ Air
Dinah Thorpe - Lullabies & Wake Up Calls
Elizaveta - Hero EP
Emerson Hart (Tonic) - Beauty In Disrepair
Horse Thief - Fear In Bliss
Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull) - Homo Erraticus
Ingrid Michaelson - Lights Out
Jessica Lea Mayfield - Make My Head Sing...
Jim Kroft - Lunatic Lullabies (UK)
Justin Currie - Lower Reaches
Justin Nozuka - Ulysees
Marika Hackman - Deaf Heat EP
Matthew & The Atlas - Other Rivers (UK)
Needtobreathe - Rivers In the Wasteland
Paolo Nutini - Caustic Love (UK)
Ramona Lisa (Chairlift's Caroline Polachek) - Arcadia
Rodney Crowell - Tarpaper Sky
The Bee Gees - The WB Years 1987-1991 Box
The Both (Aimee Mann, Ted Leo) - S/T
The Secret Sisters - Put Your Needle Down
Thee Oh Sees - Drop
Vaudeville Etiquette - Debutantes and Dealers
Wallis Bird - Architecture (UK)
Woods - With Light & With Love

April 22

Black Prairie (Decemberists) - Fortune
Dwight & Nicole - Shine On
EELS - The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett
Fear Of Men - Loom
 G. Love & Special Sauce - Sugar
Hedley - Wild Life
Justin Rutledge - Daredevil (Tragically Hip Songs)
Keb' Mo' - BLUESAmericana
Little Daylight - TBA
Little Feat - Live in Holland 1976
Margot & The Nuclear So and Sos - Sling Shot to Heaven
Sharon Corr - The Same Sun
The Madden Brothers (Good Charlotte) - TBA
The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - Days of Abandon
To Kill A King - Cannibals With Cutlery (U.S.)
Tom and Hebron - Zoyugo

April 29

Amber States - Saratoga EP
Archie Powell & The Exports - Back In Black
Ben Watt - Hendra
Brigitte DeMeyer - Savannah Road (4/29)
Broken Twin - May
Caitlin Park - The Sleeper (5/2 AUS)
Chris Robinson Brotherhood - Phosphorescent Harvest
Curtis Stigers - Hooray For Lovers
Damon Albarn (Blur, Gorillaz) - Everyday Robots
Dave Keller - Soul Changes
Edward David Anderson - Lies & Wishes
Fiona Bevan - Talk To Strangers
Ghost of A Saber Tooth Tiger (Sean Lennon) - Midnight Sun
Hafdis Huld - Home
Johnossi - Transitions
Little Hurricane - Gold Fever
Pink Mountaintops - Get Back
Prefab Sprout - Crimson/Red (U.S.)
Rodrigo y Gabriela - 9 Dead Alive
Sam Morrow - Ephemeral
The Currys - Follow
The Howlin' Brothers - Trouble
 The Milk Carton Kids - Live from Lincoln Theatre DVD
The Old 97's - Most Messed Up
Tommy Malone (Subdudes) - Poor Boy
Wye Oak - Shriek 

April TBA

Imogen Heap - Sparks
Neil Young - A Letter Home

May 6

Ben Harper/Ellen Chase-Verdries - Childhood Home
Brian Eno/Karl Hyde - Someday World
Current Swell - Ulysses
Gabrielle Aplin - English Rain EP (U.S.) 
  Gregg Allman & Various Artists - All My Friends (CD/DVD)
Gruff Rhys - American Interior
Jenny Scheinman - The Littlest Prisoner
Kina Grannis - Elements
Leisure Cruise (Dave Hodge, Leah Segal) - S/T
Liam Finn - The Nihilist
Lily Allen - Sheezus
Luke Elliot - Provisions
Lykke Li - I Never Learn
Natalie Merchant - S/T
Nikki Lane - All or Nothin'
Pacifika - Amor Planeta
Papercuts - Life Among the Savages
Rachel Taylor Brown - Falimy
Rae Morris - Do You Even Know? EP (UK)
Ray LaMontagne - Supernova
Roddy Frame (Aztec Camera) - Seven Dials (UK)
Sarah McLachlan - Shine On
South Rail - Stars EP
The Horrors - Luminous
Thomas Dybdahl - What's Left Is Forever (US)
Tiny Ruins - Brightly Painted One
tUnE-yArDs - Nikki Nack
Willie Watson - Folk Singer, Vol. 1
Wooden Wand - Farmers Corner
You Are Wolf - Hawk to the Hunting Gone (UK)

May 13

Amen Dunes - Love
Braid - No Coast
Carrie Elkin & Danny Schmidt - For Keeps
Collin Herring - Some Knives
Eleanor McEvoy - Stuff
Jake Bugg - Messed Up Kids EP (UK)
Jeremy Fisher - The Lemon Squeeze
Jesse Denaro - Dear, Love
Joseph Arthur - Lou (Lou Reed Tribute)
Kris Delmhorst - Blood Test
La Sera - Hour of the Dawn
Little Dragon - Nabuma Underground
Megson - In A Box 
Mimicking Birds - Eons
Mirah - Changing Light
Molly Beanland - Night Dreams
Little Dragon - Nabuma Rubberband
Nick Mulvey - First Mind
Owen Pallett - In Conflict
Rhodes - The Morning EP (5/11 UK)
Swans - To Be Kind 
Sylvan Esso - S/T
The Black Keys - Turn Blue
The Shilohs - S/T
The Trouble With Templeton - Rookie
Tom The Lion - Sleep
Tori Amos - Unrepentant Geraldines
Walter Martin (The Walkmen) - We're All Young Together

May 20

Bry Webb - Free Will
Cara Dillon - A Thousand Hearts (UK)
Coldplay - Ghost Stories
Conor Oberst (Bright Eyes) - Upside Down Mountain
Emma Ruth Rundle - Some Heavy Ocean
Haley Bonar - Last War
Hundreds - Aftermath
Jolie Holland - Wine Dark Sea
Kenny Wayne Shepherd - Going Home
LCD Soundsystem - The Long Goodbye: Live @ Madison Sq. Garden
Malka Spigel - Gliding EP
Nightmare & The Cat - Simple
Oasis - Definitely Maybe 20th Anniv. Ed.
Phillip Phillips - Behind the Light
Smoke Fairies - S/T
Syd Arthur - Sound Mirror
The Roots - And Then You Shoot Your Cousin
Wilsen - Magnolia EP (5/18)
Yann Tiersen - Infinity

May 27

Amy LaVere - Runaway's Diary
Blair Dunlop - House of Jacks
Challenger - Back to Bellevue
John Fullbright - Songs
John Illsley (Dire Straits) - Testing the Waters
Little Barrie - Shadow
Madison - The Bright Light EP
Matthew Barber - Big Romance
Miniature Tigers - Cruel Runnings
moe. - No Guts, No Glory
Sharon Van Etten - Are We There
Teleman - Breakfast
The Ghost Wolves - Man, Woman, Beast
Zoe Muth & The Lost High Rollers - World of Strangers

May TBA

Bridie Jackson & The Arbour - New Skin
Erlend Øye (Kings of Convenience) - Legao
Lana Del Rey - Ultraviolence

June 3

Alice Boman - EP II
BANKS - Goddess (Full Length Debut) 
Birdy - Fire Within (U.S.)
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Only Run
Echo & The Bunnymen - Meteorites (4/28 UK)
Ethan Johns - The Reckoning (Prod: Ryan Adams)
Hamilton Leithauser (The Walkmen) - Black Hours
Howling Bells - Heartstrings
James - La Petite Mort
JD McPherson - TBA
Joe Henry - Invisible Hour
Josh Record - Pillars (UK)
Kan Wakan - Moving On
Lonely the Brave - The Day's War
Matisyahu - Akeda
Meshell Ndegeocello - Comet, Come to Me
Paul Weller - More Modern Classics
Peter Murphy - Lion
Sam Smith - In the Lonely Hour
Sleep Party People - Floating
The Donkeys - TBA 
   The Peach Kings - Mojo Thunder EP
The Pierces - Creation
The Shoe (w/ Jena Malone) - I'm OK

June 10

Bob Mould - Beauty & Ruin
Cowboy Mouth - Go
First Aid Kit - Stay Gold
Glass Aniimals - Zaba
Got A Girl - I Love You But I Must Drive Off This Cliff Now
Heather Peace - The Thin Line (UK)
Jose James - While You Were Sleeping
Jack White - Lazaretto
Mary Gauthier - Trouble & Love
O.A.R. - The Rockville LP
Passenger - Whispers
Rival Sons - Great Western Valkyrie
The Who - Quadrophenia Live In London
Tomas Barfod - Love Me

June 17

Beverly Craven - Change of Heart (UK)
Glass Towers - Halcyon Days
Lewis Watson - The Morning
Mark Chadwick (Levellers) - Moment
The Antlers - Familiars
The Felice Brothers - Favorite Waitress      

June 24

Ed Sheeran - x (multiply)
George Ezra - TBA (UK)
PHOX - S/T

Beyond

Allen Stone - TBA (Summer)
As Animals - S/T
Bebel Gilberto - Tudo! (7/29)
Ben Ottewell (Gomez) - Rattlebag (TBA)
Charlene Soraia - Love Is The Law (TBA)
Dear Plastic - The Thieves Are Babes (TBA)
Deluka - BONDS EP (Spring TBA)
Don Henley - Cass County (TBA)
Ellis Paul - Chasing Beauty (TBA)
Empires - Orphans (TBA)
Haroula Rose - Here The Blue River (TBA)
Imelda May - Tribal (7/29)
James Taylor - TBA (8/19)
Jay Brannan - Always, Then, and Now (7/15)
Jonah Tolchin - Clover Road (Summer TBA)
Kite Club - Fresh Air for Humans (TBA)
Kris Delmhorst - Blood Test (Spring TBA)
Little Daylight - TBD (7/15)
Miranda Lee Richards - Echoes of the Dreamtime (TBA)
Morrissey - World Peace Is None of Your Business (Summer)
  Nick Mulvey - First Mind (9/16 U.S.)
Old Crow Medicine Show - Remedy (7/1)
Peter Himmelman - The Boat That Carries Us (TBA)
Puss N Boots (Norah Jones) - No Fools, No Fun (7/15)
Rich Robinson (Black Crowes) - The Ceaseless Sight (TBA)
Sara Lowes - The Joy of Waiting (TBA)
Sara Swenson - Runway Lights (Summer TBA)
Sasha Siem - Most of the Boys (TBA)
Scott Matthews - Home Pt. 1 (TBA)
Slow Club - Complete Surrender (7/14)
The Felice Brothers - Favorite Waitress
The Good Natured - Prism (Summer TBA)
The Vespers - Sisters and Brothers (TBA
Tiny Ruins - Brightly Painted One (TBA)
Toby Lightman - Every Kind of People (TBA)
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - Hypnotic Eye (Summer TBA)
Wakey! Wakey! - All It Takes Is A Little Love (TBA)
Winterpills - Echolalia (Covers) (TBA) 
Woman's Hour - Conversations (7/15)

All titles and dates subject to change! Correction? Addition?

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Entries in Nettwerk (25)

Tuesday
Jan142014

William Fitzsimmons - Lions

If anyone could somehow lighten the heavy emotional baggage that seems to be part of soft-spoken folkie William Fitzsimmons' DNA it's Death Cab For Cutie's Chris Walla. New album Lions (February 18, Nettwerk) the successor to 2011's fine Gold In The Shadow, has the requisite seriousness and oddly sublime sadness at the tormented heart of his songs. But while the Walla-produced album he says, is "the most revealing it can be" it also "has less to do with me than anything I’ve done before." Perhaps it's that personal arms-length attitude. Maybe it's the desire to reach beyond Fitzsimmons' confessional comfort zone and the delicate sound that saw a slight shift in tone on Gold In The Shadow. Lions is still rife with the quiet intensity that has become a Fitzsimmons trademark: the wonderful "Fortune," he says, is "a song about making a decision to walk through a river of shit instead of turning around." The sound, however, is brighter and more sharply focused, Walla giving the track some room to move and breathe on its own. Click through to watch a live, strictly acoustic version of new song "Centralia."

William Fitzsimmons - "Fortune" (from Lions)

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Monday
Oct072013

The Paper Kites - States

Debut full length States from Australia's The Paper Kites is one of those great finds that you'd like to keep all to yourself. Originally founded as the singing, songwriting duo of Sam Bentley and Christina Lacey, the Melbourne-based twosome expanded to a quintet to fill out their instrumental sound and have released two fine EP's -- Woodland and then Young North -- while two of their videos, "Bloom" and "Featherstone," have had youtube traffic topping six million views. States, just out now on Nettwerk, finds the band stretching beyond the amiable, harmonious folk pop of their EP's and heading into darker territory, lyrically and musically, and featuring what Bentley terms "strange little noises." “We really pushed our soundscapes and composition," he adds. "I’m interested in the things beyond a song: textures, adding strings, brass, touches like that." For a taste of the band's new "states," check out the dramatic art/pop underpinnings (and stinging guitar lines) of "A Lesson From Mister Gray" and then click through below for the pitch-perfect, Lacey-led "Cold Kind Hand."

The Paper Kites - "A Lesson From Mr. Gray" (from States)

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Thursday
Sep192013

BOY - Mutual Friends Acoustic EP

Valeska Steiner and Sonja Glass --  AKA Hamburg-based duo BOY -- delivered what we termed "a bundle of smart, often breezy alt-pop songs" with their fine debut album Mutual Friends, released last year in Europe and this past February in the U.S. via Nettwerk. Buoyed by lead track "Little Numbers" and nearly 10 million youtube views for the video, the young ladies of BOY have played sold-out shows and SXSW and will be returning in early October for another round of dates, this time with a full six-piece band in support. So, naturally, an EP of acoustic versions of songs from Mutual Friends makes a nice counterpoint to the amped up live sound. Just out now, the mini-album includes stripped down versions of seven songs from Mutual Friends along with a cover of "Playground Love" from the French electro-pop duo Air (click through below to stream). More DC on BOY from our original RADAR feature from April, 2012.

features seven album tracks, including stand-outs like “Little Numbers,” “Oh Boy,” “July” and “Drive Darling,” as well as a newly recorded cover of Air’s “Playground Love,” which originally appeared on The Virgin Suicides - See more at: http://www.nettwerk.com/news/boy-release-mutual-friends-acoustic-ep-september-10-tour-launches-october-1#sthash.7jSpk6Wf.dpu

BOY - "Oh Boy" (Acoustic)

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Wednesday
Sep182013

Boy and Bear - Harlequin Dream

Harlequin Dream from Australian folk/rockers Boy and Bear is the #1-charting album and follow up to their critically acclaimed debut Moonfire, a longplayer we described as "a confident, brilliant album of uncommon depth" and the winner of five Aria awards Down Under including Album of the Year. Mustachioed founder and frontman Dave Hosking says Boy and Bear's new songs, arriving October 31 via Nettwerk, draw heavily on vintage 70's radio staples -- more poppy electric, less folkie acoustic -- and lead single "Southern Sun" is a bracing shot of Dire Straits-styled sinewy guitar licks and a bouncy Fleetwood Mac rhythmic kick. Latest track "Three Headed Woman" -- note: guitar solo! -- proves that yes, they do actually make 'em like they used to. "There's something really magical in their songs," says Hosking of his heroes like The Mac, Bruce Springsteen and Paul Simon. "Hopefully something rubbed off." No doubt.

Boy and Bear - "Three Headed Woman" (from Harlequin Dream)

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Tuesday
Jul162013

RADAR: Lily Kershaw

Lily Kershaw has only released a pair of singles -- 2012's "As It Seems" followed by this year's "Ashes Like Snow" -- but so far but she's batting two-for-two. With placements on the hit TV series Criminal Minds and online buzz, the 22-year-old L.A. songstress is now poised to release her debut album Midnight In The Garden September 24 via a recent deal inked with Nettwerk. The gorgeous "As It Seems" is reminiscent of any number of melodious songwriters and crystalline-toned singers of the feminine persuasion -- from Lisa Hannigan to Joni Mitchell -- and Kershaw's voice, simultaneously cool and warm, effortlessly grabs our attention without resorting to melodrama or gimmickry. New Yorkers can catch her city debut at Rockwood Music Hall July 31. Click through to stream "Ashes Like Snow" and watch the video for "As It Seems."

Lily Kershaw - "As It Seems" (from Midnight In The Garden)

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Friday
Jul122013

Watch: The Paper Kites - "St Clarity"

We first tipped you to Australian folk/pop outfit The Paper Kites last March when their fine twin EP's were announced for stateside release via a new deal with the good folks at Nettwerk. An as-yet-untitled debut full-length is due this fall and "St Clarity" is our first peak at what founders Sam Bentley and Christina Lacey and their band have been up to. The video was directed by Natasha Pincus, who also helmed another video you may be familiar with: Gotye’s  “Somebody That I Used To Know." A fall U.S. tour opening for City and Colour kicks off October 2 before they begin headlining dates on the 21st. More DC on The Paper Kites here...

Natasha Pincus, who also helmed the celebrated video for Gotye’s Grammy-winning track “Somebody That I Used To Know,” - See more at: http://www.nettskinny.com/story/20130627/paper-kites-share-st-clarity-official-music-video-announce-headline-tour#sthash.Xj7vtLgr.dpu

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Wednesday
Mar132013

Watch: The Paper Kites - "Bloom"

The fact that "Bloom" is a couple of years old shouldn't dissuade us (or you) from marvelling on the fact that the video had now racked up 2.8 million views on youtube. That -- and another 2.3 million views for their video for "Featherstone" -- probably had something to do with the fact that the band behind the songs, Australia's The Paper Kites, have just been signed for North America by the good folks at Nettwerk. A disarming and unpretentious folk/pop band that originated as the duo of songwriters Sam Bentley and Christina Lacey before expanding to a quintet, The Paper Kites have released two EP's -- Woodland and the more recent Young North -- both of which are now available for download via iTunes and Amazon. Watch the "Featherstone" video after the jump...

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Thursday
Feb282013

BOY - Mutual Friends

The definitely non-boy Valeska Steiner and Sonja Glass are BOY, a Hamburg-based duo armed with a bundle of smart, often breezy alt-pop songs on their well-received debut album Mutual Friends, already released in Europe and the U.K. and now hitting the U.S. this week. After meeting up at music workshop in Hamburg, Steiner and Glass began writing and performing together and then, over a nearly two and half year period, laying down tracks in Berlin at the home studio of producer and multi-instrumentalist Philipp Steinke. "We made about 10 versions of most of the songs," says Sonja. "So they have evolved over the course of time. And some of them have ended up sounding completely different from the way they began." Mutual Friends alternates easily from brightly colored, uptempo tracks such as "Little Numbers" (youtube video views: 7.5 million - watch below) to the thoughtful introspective "Drive Darling" (stream after the jump) and album closer "July".

BOY - 'This Is the Beginning' (from Mutual Friends)

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Friday
Nov302012

Watch: Hey Ocean! - "Sprawl II" (Arcade Fire Cover)

We first tipped you to Vancouver pop/folk trio Hey Ocean! a year ago with the release of their Big Blue Wave EP, the predecessor to 2012's IS full-length (finally arriving stateside January 29 via Nettwerk). Vocalist Ashleigh Ball, bassist/producer David Vertesi and guitarist David Beckingham offered up, we noted at the time, a "juggernaut of oversized, crisp and crunchy pop." We were so taken by the EP's effervescent and completely infectious title track that we went on to feature the video for "Big Blue Wave" earlier this year (watch it below). But Hey Ocean! don't always plays music with an exclamation point in the production and "Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains", an Arcade Fire cover from their album The Suburbs, is a prime example. Starting from just Ball's voice and a guitar, the song builds to a full band production including fiddle and brass, all recorded in someone's basement.

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Friday
Nov162012

RADAR REDUX: BOY

UPDATE: BOY have been signed to Nettwerk with an early 2013 release scheduled for the debut. From our post in April:

The definitely non-boy Valeska Steiner and Sonja Glass are BOY, a Hamburg-based duo armed with a bundle of smart, often breezy alt-pop songs on their well-received debut album Mutual Friends, released last fall in Germany and Switzerland and the U.K. this past June. After meeting up at music workshop in Hamburg, Steiner and Glass began writing and performing together and then, over a nearly two and half year period, laying down tracks in Berlin at the home studio of producer and multi-instrumentalist Philipp Steinke. "We made about 10 versions of most of the songs," says Sonja. "So they have evolved over the course of time. And some of them have ended up sounding completely different from the way they began." Mutual Friends alternates easily from brightly colored, uptempo tracks such as "Little Numbers (youtube video views: 3.5 6.5 million - watch below) to the thoughtful introspective "Drive Darling" and album closer "July".

BOY - "This Is the Beginning" (from Mutual Friends)

BOY - "Oh Boy" (from Mutual Friends)

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Monday
Aug062012

Liam Titcomb - Cicada

Following the intense demise of a relationship, Toronto-based songwriter Liam Titcomb hopped on a plane and headed to London to begin a period of healing, reflection -- and songwriting. New album Cicada (August 7, Nettwerk), is first in five years, is a major step forward for the 25-year-old. "My world opened up immensely while I was over there," says Titcomb. "There weren't any rules when it came to making music. Form and structure went out the window, and the goal was to simply write a great song. You learn the rules and structure. Then, you forget them and just create...It was a great shakeup, and I came home with some very different songs." Produced by instrumentalist and co-writer Jay Joyce (Patty Griffin, The Wallflowers) and recorded in Nashville, Cicada is striking collection of memorable and accomplished pop/folk tracks that we think deserves wider exposure in the U.S. For beginners, check out the John Mayer-meets-Fleetwood-Mac "Love Don't Let Me Down" and the jangling, buskery "Landslide", the song that originally got Titcomb signed to Nettwerk. Full bio below.

Liam Titcomb - "Love Don't Let Me Down" (from Cicada)

Liam Titcomb - "Landslide" (from Cicada)

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Tuesday
May012012

RADAR: Family of the Year

L.A.'s Family of the Year really do keep the familial concept an integral part of who the are. Sure, frontman Joe Keefe and drummer Sebastian Keefe are brothers but there's also a communal spirit that flows through the heart of the band's brightly spangled alt-pop. Reminiscent at times of the irony-free campfire choruses of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros (with whom FOTY has toured), the band's effervescent songs reflect more hippie high organics than hipster posing urbanities. New single "Stairs" is another glimpse of the Family's forthcoming debut longplayer, a multi-voiced, lyrically stream-of-consciousness anthem that falls somewhere between some bongwater version of Up With People and a U2-backed cast of Hair. (Plus we give them a gold star for the line "on the doorstep, on the door fucking step") For more sunny delights, check out the impossibly hooky title track to last year's "St. Croix" EP -- a song that will also resurface on the band's debut album Loma Vista (release date TBA July 10, Nettwerk). Videos below.

Family of the Year - "Stairs" (from the album Loma Vista)

Family of the Year - "St. Croix" (from the St. Croix EP)

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Friday
Apr132012

Admiral Fallow - Tree Bursts In Snow

Admiral Fallow - Led by frontman and chief songwriter Louis Abbott, Scottish indie folk/pop band with a rough hewn edge returns with the eagerly anticipated follow up to 2010's breakout debut Boots Met My Face, an album we heralded as "quietly epic" and "a triumphant, visionary work" // Release: Tree Bursts In Snow (May 22 digital - June 26 CD, Nettwerk) // Sounds like: while there are elegant moments of ethereal harmonies and bedroom folk introspection to be had, the band seems to have honed their freewheeling sound and amped up the power playing over the din of ale-soaked clubs...the dramatic and artful approach to instrumentation and production sounds completely natural and unpretentious -- this is music grounded in basics yet as beautifully crafted as the most opulent chamber pop...

Admiral Fallow - "The Paper Trench" (from Tree Bursts In Snow)

Admiral Fallow - "Beetle in the Box" (from Tree Bursts In Snow)

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Thursday
Mar292012

Joshua Hyslop - Where the Mountain Meets the Valley

We first tipped you to Vancouver songwriter Joshua Hyslop a year ago when we opined that his promising EP Cold Wind offered up "soft-spoken acoustic songs melding minimalist classic folk/pop trappings with contemporary neo-folk melodies". Nettwerk debut album Where the Mountain Meets the Valley, due May 1, continues the intimate tip-toe into the William Fitzsimmons, Sam Beam and Damien Rice territory of ethereal, soul-bearing sensitivity as Hyslop's soft, airy vocals mesh with understated pop/folk instrumentation. The lovely duet "What Have I Done" is a good indicator of what's in store as Hyslop and Anna Scouten join their voice is sweet harmony as guitars and mandolins chime above a gentle cascade of rhythm.

Joshua Hyslop - "What Have I Done" (featuring Anna Scouten) (from Where the Mountain Meets the Valley)

Joshua Hyslop - "Nowhere Left to Go" (from the Where the Mountain Meets the Valley)

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Friday
Feb242012

Watch: Hey Ocean! - "Big Blue Wave"

Whether you've had a terrible day or a fantastic day, this song's for you. Taken from Hey Ocean!'s forthcoming Nettwerk album IS (date TBA) and current EP, "Big Blue Wave" is an irresistable video and can't-get-it-out-of-my-head song that takes us back to when power pop was cool and New Wavey and effervescent sonic refreshers like this one used to waft from pop radio speakers with regularity. The Vancouver trio --vocalist Ashleigh Ball, bassist/producer David Vertesi and guitarist David Beckingham -- have delivered what we described last fall as "a breezy blend of pop, soul and folk" but with a new sound that's "even bigger, bolder and brighter than before."

Hey Ocean - "Big Blue Wave" (from the album IS and the Big Blue Wave EP)

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Thursday
Jan052012

Listen: Joshua Hyslop - "Nowhere Left to Go"

We've been following the trajectory of Vancouver neo-folk songwriter Joshua Hyslop following his signing to the prestigious Nettwerk group last year. We noted that his Cold Wind EP (rereleased last summer) "treads lightly into Damien Rice, Sam Beam and Sufjan Stevens territory", a quality found on the fine "Nowhere Left to Go" included in a free download sampler from Nettwerk via Noisetrade. Hyslop is in the mixing stage of his debut full length album due later this year. Stay tuned...and catch the "Cold Wind" video after the jump.

Joshua Hyslop - "Nowhere Left to Go" (from the Cold Wind EP)

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Monday
Jun272011

Joshua Hyslop - Cold Wind (EP)

Joshua Hyslop - Vancouver-based singer/songwriter treads lightly into Damien Rice, Sam Beam, William Fitzsimmons and Sufjan Stevens territory...album is out now digitally with physical EP release due soon in Canada, U.S. to follow...full length in production now, stay tuned // Release: Cold Wind EP (July 19, Nettwerk) // Sounds like: soft-spoken acoustic songs melding minimalist classic folk/pop trappings with contemporary neo-folk melodies...Hyslop credits stylistic inspiration for his new songs from a recent extended trip to India // Quote: “One of those superbly talented performers that seems to come from out of nowhere. Young Mr. Hyslop has a singer-songwriter maturity far beyond his years.” Mark Rheaume – CBC Radio...

Joshua Hyslop - "If I Was A Better Man" (from the EP Cold Wind)

Joshua Hyslop - "Cold Wind" (from the EP Cold Wind)

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Thursday
Feb102011

William Fitzsimmons - Gold in the Shadow

Three years ago, William Fitzsimmons released his third album The Sparrow and The Crow, a devastating and brilliant confessional retelling of the disintegration of his ten year marriage. While considered a high point of his musical output, the album also reflected an emotional and psychological low for Fitzsimmons and he retreated from writing for two years. Now as the title of his new album Gold In the Shadow (March 22, Nettwerk) would suggest, the soft-spoken performer has emerged from his dark despair and there is light and optimism again in his life. Music and its creation are said to be therapeutic. It takes on an even deeper meaning when it comes from a man who recorded his first two albums at the time he was working as a therapist for the severely mentally ill.

Fitzsimmons candidly describes his new songs as "a real and long coming confrontation with personal demons, past mistakes, and the specter of mental illness that has hovered over me for the great majority of my life." While the lyrical atmosphere is weighty, this is an album focused ultimately on healing. With the tenderest of voices, Fitzsimmons skillfully weaves together folk tapestries of beauty and intelligence, songs that offer expanded production but keep the spotlight on his simply laid out melodies and near-whispered vocals. "The Tide Pulls from the Moon" is a somber folk hymn of delicate guitar and piano textures while the gently upbeat "The Winter from Her Leaving" quietly clicks its heels in a bright shuffle. Gold in the Shadow is also available in a deluxe version featuring a second disc with ten more songs, a mix of acoustic versions and additional songs.

Artist Site  Facebook 

William Fitzsimmons - "The Tide Pulls from the Moon" (from the album Gold In the Shadow)

William Fitzsimmons - "The Winter from Her Leaving" (from the album Gold In the Shadow)

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Friday
Feb042011

Briefs: Matt Wertz - Weight and Wings

Matt Wertz - Nashville-based singer/songwriter returns with his fourth album and his first since 2008's Under Summer Sun... // Release: Weight and Wings (March 15, Nettwerk), produced by Jason Lehning (Alison Krauss, Mat Kearney) // Sounds like: a modern re-imagining of the Eagles/Jackson Browne 70's So-Cal aesthetic with a nice kick in the pants...//What we like wish: we could forget the foot of snow out there and transport ourselves to to some warm shorts-and-sandals beach, "Feels So Right" blaring on the boom box...

Matt Wertz - "Feels So Right" (from the album Weight and Wings)

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Saturday
Jan152011

Briefs: Wanting

Wanting - Chinese-born singer/songwriter now living in Vancouver...her last name (Qu) means "music, song, melody" // Release: Recording her first English album now for Nettwerk // News: Wanting's Chinese-sung ballad -- 我的歌声里 ("You Exist In My Song") -- has been hit over a million times on Chinese 'youtube' // What we like: that melodic piano pop knows no language barrier...her heavily influenced writing style might sound at times 'by the numbers', but doesn't hide the fact that there's some budding talent on display...

Wanting - "Everything In the World"

Wanting - 我的歌声里 ("You Exist In My Song")

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